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“This is a game. This is baseball, but it means a lot to the city of Boston. It means a lot to the people that live there,” Will Middlebrooks told reporters. “If we can just get something on the TV aside from replays of the events from yesterday, I think it’ll help a lot. Hopefully we can go out and play well.
Baseball in this town was never just a game. It's always been much more. The reason why Bostonians would brag that we were the best sports fans in the world was because we always took it so personal. Tourists and outsiders always thought the brutal weather made us bitter. It was more frustration from the Red Sox coming short yet again. The misery of the Red Sox was something that was a rite of passage for younger generations.
I haven't seen this city as happy as I did on the morning of October 28th, 2004. The city was filled with people wearing the iconic red "B" on their head and chest, smiles going cheek to cheek, strangers hugging each other.
It's also why Sox fans have been on a rampage against John Henry and the rest of Fenway Sports Group as the purity of the Red Sox was slowly sucked out and our loyalty to the team was abused as a way to suck us dry. A businessman toying with our pride and joy felt like a personal stab in the back.
And after our city being rocked to our core over a horrific attack just 48 hours ago, watching the Red Sox take the field was a step towards normalcy. Seeing that "Boston Strong 617" jersey in the dugout was more than a gesture. It's saying that this team is here for us, that we are on their minds and they are here to help us get through this. All those years of worrying about this team and they will return the favor when this city needs it the most.
The Boston Marathon and Patriot's Day as a whole may never be the same. Hell, we may never be the same. Going back to something that resembles what we considered normal is an uphill battle. The Red Sox started by taking the field and it was fantastic to just get sucked into a game. Tonight, the Bruins pick up where the Sox left off. The Celtics will do the same the following evening and they will pack the TD Garden and the North Station area and we will bring that passion and over exubrance that we're known for.
Then on Friday the Sox return to Fenway and we will flock over to Lansdowne Street. We will root for the home team and belt out Sweet Caroline louder than ever before and while we help the team by rooting them for a victory, they will help us get one step closer to that normalcy.
Globe: Seemingly trivial pursuit | Situations is in their thoughts | A few notes from Cleveland | Herald: Sox sound rallying cry | Sox left in shock | Big Papi on way | CSNNE: Picking up where they left off | Napoli heating up at the plate for the Sox | Sox past & present struggle with tragedy | WEEI: Ortiz talks about marathon | Sweet Caroline plays all over the park | Tito knew what he was doing | Napoli, walks lead Red Sox past Indians